|Title||How cognitive ability and financial literacy shape the demand for financial advice at older ages|
|Year of Publication||2019|
|Authors||Kim, HHoikwang, Maurer, R, Mitchell, OS|
|Series Title||NBER Working Paper Series|
|Document Number||NBER Working Paper No. 25750|
|Institution||National Bureau of Economic Research|
|Keywords||Cognition & Reasoning, Financial literacy, Social Support|
We investigate how cognitive ability and financial literacy shape older Americans’ demand for financial advice using an experimental module in the 2016 Health and Retirement Study. We show that cognitive ability and financial literacy strongly improve the quality, but not the quantity, of financial advice sought. Most importantly, the financially literate and more cognitively able tend to seek financial help from professionals rather than family members, and they are less likely to accept so-called ‘free’ financial advice that may entail conflicts of interest. Nevertheless, those with higher cognitive function also tend to distrust financial advisors, leading them to eschew their services.